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Posted 19 May 2015

UCD student wins Royal Society of Chemistry online video competition

Matthew Coleman, a final-year chemistry student at University College Dublin, has scooped first prize in a video competition run by The Royal Society of Chemistry. The competition involved early-career researchers making an original one minute video highlighting to a non-specialist audience how chemistry has helped to address challenges in health.

The competition entries were shortlisted by an expert judging panel based on language (appropriate for a non-specialist audience and the general public); style (engaging, dynamic, and compelling, making the audience interested in the topic); creativity (help the audience understand the research in an innovative way); and content (accurately demonstrates how chemistry has helped to address challenges in health). The shortlisted entries were then put to a vote by members of the Royal Society of Chemistry and the public.

Matthew’s winning video for this year’s Take 1‚Ķminute for chemistry in health competition investigated nanoparticles as drug delivery couriers. In his one minute video, the UCD science student used the analogy of a courier driving around the streets of Dublin to convey how drug particles attached to the surfaces of nanoparticles, which could be equipped with what they need to potentially deliver a disease-free world.

“Nano science was my final year research project and I was working on functionalism in nanoparticles, with the end goal of potential for new vaccine development and drug delivery carriers,” said Matthew.

“My father had never heard of any the aspects of my research. He helped me to focus when writing the script for the competition, I was using a lot of in-depth science, and he said, “I don’t understand that lingo, so we need to make it more understandable so that the public understands it”.”

“I had to come up with the title [for my video] and we came up with the idea that these nanoparticles and the new technology were the most exciting opportunity for treating disease.”

According to Matthew, the experience has helped him to see his detailed research in the broader context of how it could improve the delivery of healthcare to fight and kill diseases.

“I would have experience of presenting final year projects and the results of scientific experiments to my college lecturers,” he said.

“But trying to simplify the data and the results to convey it to the lay person helped me to focus more on the application of the research. The process of doing the video gave me a broader perspective on how the research was helping the world.”

The Royal Society of Chemistry online video competition was also won by a UCD student last year. John Gleeson, a then PhD student at UCD, claimed first prize with his one minute video on the topic of ‘Chemistry in Health’ which explained harvesting food for health gain.


(Produced by UCD University Relations)


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UCD student wins Royal Society of Chemistry online video competition
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